Survey: Online Sponsorships Effective for Brand Advertisers

Two out of five marketers say that sponsoring a Web site or page is the most effective way online to enhance a brand’s perception, according to the 2009 Advertising Effectiveness Survey conducted by Forbes magazine.

Respondents to the survey said the most effective tools for generating conversions, such as a sale, are: search engine optimization (48 percent); e-mail marketing (46 percent) and pay-per-click search marketing (32 percent).

Looking ahead, those surveyed said they expect viral marketing and search engine optimization will likely see the biggest increases in allocation of marketing budgets in the coming six months. Ad networks, they said, will likely see the biggest decline in share of marketing budgets during that time.

A total of 87 percent of respondents say they measure results of their digital campaigns in some way. Forty-four percent say they benchmark results against metrics established at the outset of a campaign; 29 percent say they benchmark results against the results of previous, similar campaigns.

When asked to identify the most important metrics that indicate the success of their digital marketing campaigns, 70 percent of those with budgets over $1 million cite conversion or sales. A total of 52 percent say registration or subscriptions via an advertiser’s Web site, and 49 percent point to click-throughs. Boost in search rank is important to 34 percent of those surveyed, while only six percent say streams of video or audio content is an important metrics.

Behavioral targeting is on the minds of marketers. A total of 82 percent of respondents say they are concerned about the effectiveness of behavioral targeting, while 81 percent say they are concerned about customer backlash in response to the practice.

The advertising effectiveness study was fielded online in February and March of 2009 among senior level advertising, marketing, and media executives. Respondents included two audiences: CMOs and other C-suite professionals who hold roles in advertising, marketing, and other media, and senior-level executives defined as director or above who hold roles in advertising, marketing, or media from the Forbes Advisory Panel, an opt-in panel of senior executive Forbes subscribers surveyed regularly on business trends, ideas, and issues. A total of 112 responses were received.

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